This is my favorite story from Seth Godin’s, “The Big Moo”. If you haven’t read the book, it’s a great read, with short, impactful stories that can help individuals and organizations think differently and learn how to be remarkable.
I’m sharing this one story here since the book is in the public domain. However, buy the book for yourself or a bunch of copies for your team, it’s a worthy investment.
Be Like Reggie
“Reggie fixes bikes in Mt. Kisco, New York. For every bike that he fixes (he charges by the hour and even a small job takes an hour) he does his best. Then he spends 5 extra minutes doing something special.
During that first hour, Reggie is a perfectly good bike mechanic. He pays attention to detail and follows established protocol. He is careful and focused and diligent. Like one thousand other very good bike mechanics, he gets the job done and earns his pay.
In the last 5 minutes, though, Reggie transforms himself from a workman into an artist. In those few extra minutes, he becomes remarkable.
Sometimes, all he does is carefully clean the chain. Other times, he’ll take the bike out to the potholed parking lot and be sure that the gears are adjusted properly. And sometimes, especially if the bike is for a cute kid, he’ll attach a horn or some tassels – anything worth noticing.
The astonishing thing isn’t how unusual Reggie is. The astonishing thing is how easy it is to do what Reggie does, and how many people don’t do it. It doesn’t matter if you’re doing accounts payable or product design. Those last five minutes make it easy for your customers to find the difference between you and everyone else.
It takes 99 percent of the time you spend just to be average. The remarkable stuff can happen in a flash.”
Photo courtesy of Unsplash.